Wednesday, April 13, 2011


I'm off to see a couple paintings today, then I'll spend the afternoon in the library, where I've been told there are good places to work.  But at the moment, Naples is behaving like it actually is April, and a torrent of rain is falling.  While I'm waiting for a break in the weather, I thought I'd post photos of the best food I've eaten this week.  I thought about avoiding the subject of food altogether -- I don't want to generate any hate-mail -- but it's impossible to visit Italy without cuisine being a central part of the experience.

In a quiet piazza in Rome, a late lunch: spaghetti alla carbonara (eggs, cheese, and bacon), with a Roman-style artichoke on the side (their version was stuffed with herbs and finished with oil).

On the coast, near the castle where Caravaggio was detained, we ate a seaside lunch of risotto con frutti di mare (the sea-fruits included mussels, clams, shrimp, and squid).  Not pictured are bruschetta, caprese salad, and a desert of granita con panna (a frozen espresso slush with fresh whipped cream).

Finally, I asked around for the best pizza in Naples. There are a lot of opinions -- pizza is thought to have originated here, and the locals take it very seriously -- but most people mentioned D'Antiqua Pizzeria Da Michele. There was quite a wait when I arrived, and even though Julia Roberts' character ate there in that recent movie of hers (you know the one), the place was filled solely with Italians. I guess they like Julia Roberts more than we do. There are two choices on the menu -- pizza margherita or pizza marinara. No sides, no toppings. The only drinks offered are Nastro Azzuro beer (Italian PBR), Coke,  or water, all served with plastic dixie cups.  The pizzas cost only 4 euros.

By the way, a movie still from Eat Pray Love was plastered on every wall of the restaurant, and Julia is drinking red wine from a bucket-glass, which they had to have brought in as a prop. Now that's just shameful. What's wrong with cheap beer in plastic shot-glasses?


  1. yup, sea fruits. i'm gonna go find some tonight in naples. for anyone who thinks that sounds shady, an explanation: "sea fruits" was my roman friend's charming way of saying "seafood" in his limited english. his english is much improved since then, so now he says seafood, but i say sea fruits.

  2. Dan:

    I'm really enjoying reading about your trip and your findings. I'm glad to have invested in your project and wish you the best with your travels and research. Buona fortuna!


  3. Thanks, Ron. I'm enjoying the trip and getting good work done, and all of it is happening because folks like you backed the project.

    Are you some sort of sandwich master? I work in a bar in Portland that has arguably the best sandwiches in the country.